Your smile is one of the first things that people notice about you. Here are some tips to help you achieve a beautiful and healthy smile.
There is a daily “mantra”: brush, floss, rinse, and repeat.
You need to brush your teeth twice a day: many people still need to be reminded to brush their teeth at least twice a day.
How you brush is also important. Angle the bristles toward the gum line at a 45-degree angle, with just enough pressure to make the tissue a lighter color. Gently make small strokes, focusing on only one or two teeth at a time. This will keep your gums healthy and remove the most plaque.
Using a manual toothbrush? Make sure you choose the one with extra soft bristles, stiffer bristles and aggressive brushing causes gums to recede and can wear enamel away from the teeth.
If you decide to use an electric toothbrush, buy a top quality one. You can always ask your dentist or your dental hygienist which one they would recommend.
Remember to replace your manual toothbrush or the tooth brush heads for the electric ones every 3-4 months.
Flossing removes plaque between teeth and from the gum line, where a toothbrush can’t reach. Daily flossing helps prevent tooth decay and gingivitis.
To floss properly, wrap the floss tightly around your finger and insert in the space between your teeth. Gently slide it up and down under the gum line two to three times. If bleeding occurs, this is most likely due to gingivitis or gum disease.
If you some reason are not able to floss, try an oral irrigator. This device sprays liquid (water or oral rinse) with pressure and it helps to remove plaque and food between your teeth and below your gum line.
See your dental hygienist, at least, twice a year
Having routine cleanings based on your specific needs helps to promote good oral health and a beautiful smile.
In addition to removing stain and tartar from your teeth, your dental hygienist will also screen for health conditions like high blood pressure and oral cancer. Because many health conditions manifest themselves in the mouth, your dentist and dental hygienist can make you aware of it.
The routine dental appointments will also identify any dental issues at the beginning, avoiding dental emergencies and/or more extensive dental treatments.
Changing habits: give up smoking
Smoking causes staining to your teeth. Smoking also damages healthy gums, causing them to recede and develop large pockets around the teeth. This makes teeth appear longer and creates dark spaces between them. Smoking also makes it very difficult to reverse gum disease.
Changing habits: limit your coffee, tea, and red wine intake
Drinks like coffee, tea, and red wine are known for staining teeth. Similar to smoking, these drinks can build up a superficial stain that your dentist or hygienist can polish off. But they can also cause internal staining of your tooth enamel.
Drink plenty of water. Water is the healthiest drink for your smile and your body. It helps flush teeth clean and discourages tooth decay. Consumption of acidic or sugary drinks, like sodas and juices can increase decay rates dramatically.
Improve your other health conditions
Conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, and bruxism (also known as teeth grinding) can all affect the health and appearance of your smile. When the body is strained by one health condition, it’s more difficult to treat another.
Get dental treatment in a timely manner
Dental conditions never correct themselves on their own. Tooth decay left untreated can easily transform a small cavity into a large tooth abscess. If left untreated, decay can spread to other teeth and may cause infections throughout the rest of your body.
At Iris Dentistry, your dentist in Waterloo, we can help you to get a beautiful and healthy smile. Request your appointment online or call us at (519) 886-8980.
To read more about beautiful and healthy smile, visit the Ontario Dental Association website.